Rwanda has been elected to head the East African Public Procurement Interim Secretariat.
The decision is one of the resolutions from the fourth East African Public Procurement Forum that ended in Kigali last week.
In an interview with The New Times yesterday, Augustus Seminega, the Director General of Rwanda Public Procurement Authority (RPPA), said participants agreed to put in place a regional public procurement secretariat to coordinate the activities of state bodies.
“Public procurement authorities in East African Community (EAC) member states have been lacking a legal and institutional framework to bring us together and I believe this secretariat will promote efficiency and transparency in procurement systems in the region,” Seminega said.
He added that once in place; the interim secretariat would request the East African Secretariat to set up a desk for the forum at the EAC headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania
Seminega added that the regional public procurement meetings, held on a rotational basis annually, have also been lacking an institutional framework.
He noted that as the host of the fourth forum, RPPA has been charged with initiating the establishment of the interim secretariat.
According to Seminega, his institution would draft a proposal and forward it to their counteroarts for input in consultation with line ministers.
“On behalf of our country, RPPA is pleased that Rwanda will be the first country to head this interim secretariat, and I believe this will enable us to address various challenges still facing the public procurement sector in the region,” Seminega said.
He noted that the secretariat is expected to be operational within six months from now, adding that the second secretariat would be taken up by Burundi which will host the fifth East African Public Procurement forum next year.